• Tag Archives women’s senior tennis
  • Rice, Nideffer, Dixon & Hillebrand Win Singles Titles in La Jolla

    Click here to view draws.

    Andrea Rice put on a dominating performance in the final of the 50 Hard Courts, beating top seeded Nancy Hilliard 61 62. Dina McBride finished third (winning the 3/4 playoff by default). Mariko Atoji finished 5th.

    Ros Nideffer won the 60s in equally dominating fashion, beating Fran Chandler 60 63. Vicki Buholz beat me 62 64 in the 3/4 playoff and the consolation is still ongoing. Ann Young edged Terri Thyssen in a match tiebreak 10-8 and faces Kim Dean who ousted Ginny Beneke in straight sets.

    Judy Dixon cruised past everyone in the women’s 70s, beating first time national singles finalist Barbara Hubbard 63 61. Barbara is a player from Hawaii who has been playing national tournaments for year, gradually improving from losing first or second round, to now, in the 70s reaching singles finals…a gold ball will follow some day! Cathie Anderson took the bronze and Carol Gay finished 5th; the 9th place playoff is ongoing.

    Charleen Hillebrand ousted Suella Steel to win the 80s; Hillebrand led 5-2 when Steel retired with a leg injury. Lorna Brooks finished 3rd, beating Susanne Clark by default (Clark pulled a calf in the 2nd set tiebreak of her semifinal against Steel).

    The 50 doubles final will be #1 Nideffer/Debbie Spence Nasim (who ousted Jenny Keller/Jen Dawson) vs McBride/Tracie Currie (who beat Vicki Buholz/Gayle Prejean).

    In 60 doubles, La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club members Una Davis/Lucia Romanov are in the final after beating Colleen Clery Ferrell/Tracey Thompson in a match tiebreak 10-7. They will take on unseeded Sue Pendo/Julie Juliani who ousted Julie David/Gail Warden.

    The 70 doubles semis were a bit odd though extremely competitive. The USTA has mandated a new format for doubles involving round robins leading to a knockout draw and has dictated that all doubles matches be decided by match tiebreaks. The USTA has mandated that the same format be used for all Level 1 (gold ball) tournaments. The top seeds, Kathy Bennett/Liane Bryson played Kathy Barnes/Carol Gay (3)…and Barnes/Gay won 63 16 76 (7)…they played a full third set due to umpire error. (The Level 5 men’s event is playing out the third set of singles and doubles and the same umpires are used for both events.) The #2 seeds Vicky McEvoy/Judy Dixon faced #4 Sue Bramlette/Cindy Babb and they also split sets (the score isn’t correctly reported but each team won a set) and then played a match tiebreak won 11-9 by McEvoy/Dixon. Both were great matches and it was unfortunate that an umpire error marred the results.

    In 80 doubles, Steel/Sheila Weinstock will play Roz King/Dorothy Wasser in the final while Lorna Brooks/Jean Ainger take on Hillebrand/Sheila Palmer.


  • Jane Lutz Wins 90 Singles and Doubles at the La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club Saturday

    Jane Lutz, 90, played six sets of tennis today to win the USTA 90 hard court singles & doubles titles. Rita Price also played six sets of tennis today and came away with a singles silver and doubles gold for her efforts.

    Jane won the singles 26 75 64 over Price and Jane and Rita won the doubles 75 46 63 over Janet Hubbard/Pat Wiedenmann.

    I repeat…Jane is 90, Rita is 92 and they played for over four hours on hard courts no less.

    The photos below are courtesy of Mary Johnson

    • Photos (more will be added)
    Jane Lutz and the class fun maker Rita Price
    Rita Price
    Jane Lutz

  • Finals Day, National Women’s Hard Courts, La Jolla: Two Marathons in One Day!

  • Friday was finals day at the USTA National Hard Courts at the La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club. I didn’t get to see much tennis because I was on court most of the day from about 11:30 till about 8pm. Susan Wright and I played our second marathon in a month, and it was a tough match. I came away with the 26 75 76(4) win in about 3.5 hours (was down 41 in the third but kept on fighting). Susan is as gracious in defeat as in victory, the sign of a champion. About 90 minutes later Robin Harris and I took on Susan and Shannon Carney in the doubles final. Three hours later Susan and Shannon came away with a well deserved 57 63 62 win.
  • Shannon won the 3/4 playoff over Cindy Johnson in a match tiebreak 14-12. Their tiebreak (they were playing next to us) seemed to go on forever, though I think their match was shorter than ours. Erin Boynton/Abbi Neuthaler won the bronze over Una Davis/Tracey Thompson. Kathy Vick took 5th and Erin Boynton took 7th. (The tournament had a quarterfinal playoff and then a 7/8 playoff for the quarterfinal losers who lost their first match in the playoff, a first.
  • Jen Dawson was the only double gold winner of the week, edging top seeded Andrea Rice in a grueling 75 75 win. I saw a little of the beginning of the match and it was fantastic tennis. Jen is a rock at the baseline and Andrea played athletic all court tennis. You won’t find two nicer competitors anywhere (Shelly Works, you have competition for this title in these two!). Dawson teamed with Jenny Rens Keller to win the doubles over Rice/Anna Zimmermann 62 62. It was Jenny Keller’s first gold ball.
  • Conan Lorenzo, Andrea Rice and Jen Dawson with TD Bill Kellogg, photo courtesy of Mary Johnson
  • Kristen Kepler won the 50 singles bronze over Keller; Deb Higa/Jennifer Lyons took the bronze over Kepler/Neuthaler.
  • Judy Dixon won the 70 singles with an emphatic 63 60 win over #2 seeded Molly Hahn. I believe it was her first singles gold ball. Liane Bryson/Kathy Bennett won the doubles over Dixon/Vicky McEvoy 64 63. Sue Kimball edged Carol Gay in three sets for the singles bronze but Carol Gay/Sheila Johnson came away with the doubles win against Hahn/Kimball to win the doubles bronze.
  • Lorna Brooks, unseeded, won the 80 singles 62 64 over top seeded Dorothy Wasser. She did it the hard way too, beating the #3, #2 and #1 seeds en route to the title. Brooks is from Wyoming now but used to live in Exeter, in the Central Valley of California and we used to practice together about 35 years ago… I knew how good she was then and so wasn’t too surprised when she won. She was one of the top 2 juniors in SoCal as a youngster (Sally Huss was the top junior). She played with her hair down, which amazed some of the spectators (it doesn’t move). Lola O’Sullivan/Barbara Oldfield were the surprise doubles winner. For Barbara it was her first USTA ball of any color! They beat Claudia Giacommini/Dorothy Matthiessen 76(4) 63 for the gold.
  • Burnett Herrick won the 80 singles bronze by default (injury) over Carol Wood; Herrick/Wasser beat Lynn Tietz/Wood for the 80 doubles bronze.
  • The 90s final is this morning at 9am between Rita Price and Jane Lutz, followed by the de facto doubles final (it’s a three team round robin between the two undefeated teams) scheduled for 1pm.
  • Draws are here.
  • Day 1 Blog
  • Day 2 Blog
  • Day 3 Blog
  • Day 4 Blog
  • Photos (more will be added).

  • National Clay Courts Friday: All Day on Court

    Palm Beach Gardens, Florida

    Draws are here.

    Day 1 blog

    Day 2 blog

    Day 3 blog

    Friday, Day 4 at the National Clay Courts at the Palm Beach Gardens Tennis Center was semifinal day and for Susan Wright and I it meant playing from around 11:30 to just shy of 7pm (with a break between singles and doubles of about 90 minutes). Susan and I played a see-saw marathon match for about 3 1/2 hours…two matches came and went on the court next to us and the third match was started before we finished! I ended up winning on a hot, breezy day, 64 36 63, We beat #4 seeded Kris McDonald/Kathy Zanon 63 64 (though it was over two hours…Susan said it was the longest straight set doubles she’d ever played). Susan played great and definitely made more winners than anyone else on the court. We play Pat Purcell/Ligia Bottinelli in the final…they took out the #2 seeds, Betsy Savitt/Ann Jacobs 61 62. In singles I play Diane Barker who beat Kathy Vick 60 62.

    In the 50s, Julie Cass beat Andrea Rice 61 75 and faces Jenny Klitch, who took out Vesna McKenna 61 61. Klitch/Rice beat Jami Patterson/Anna Zimmermann in straight sets and face Cass/McKenna in the final. They were leading Alissa Finerman/Natalie Herreman 32 when Finerman/Herreman had to retire with illness.

    In the 70s Toni Novack stopped Gwenda Ward’s run (though no doubt Ward did a lot of running in the match…after drop shots). Novack won 63 61 and faces #2 seeded Judy Dixon a 60 62 winner over Brenda Winstead. In doubles Betty Wachob/Donna Fales beat Ann Loose/Ward in three sets and play Dixon/Vicky McEvoy in the final…they edged Molly Hahn/Sue Kimball 75 64 in the semis.

    The 80s singles is between Inge Weber (who beat her doubles partner Dorothy Wasser) and Dori DeVries, who beat Lola O’Sullivan in a tough 2-setter 64 75. Wasser/Weber won the doubles round robin.

    In the 40s, Lizl Kotz plays a player from Japan, Mika Todo. There were only three teams in doubles; the de facto final is tomorrow.

    There are also lots of consolation matches, both for players who lost before the quarters and for players who lost in the quarters.

    Draws are here.

    Day 1 blog

    Day 2 blog

    Day 3 blog


  • USTA SoCal Sweeps 35s & 45s at USTA National Women’s Intersectional Team Event

    USTA SoCal won the 35s and 45s at the USTA National Senior Women’s Team Event in Phoenix on Sunday.

    Complete list of winners (one match short of a California sweep!)

    • 35s: SoCal
    • 45s: SoCal
    • 55s: NorCal
    • 65s: Southern (d. SoCal 3/2 in the final)
    • 75s: SoCal
    • 80s: SoCal

    Draws are here.

    SoCal edged Texas 3/2 to win the 35s division which was a round robin.

    The women’s 45s team beat Southern 4/1 to win gold in Phoenix.

  • SoCal Sweeps 75s & 80s at USTA Women’s Intersectional Team Championships

    SoCal won both the 75s and 80s in Phoenix after narrowly going down to Southern in the 65s earlier in the week. Intersectionals is the biggest women’s senior tournament each year and pits players from up to 17 USTA sections against each other annually in a staggered seven day competition (each age division competes for four days). Players compete in singles and doubles.

    The SoCal 80s featured the most recent two ITF world singles champions in Roz King and Dori DeVries (who boomerangs between NorCal and SoCal yearly).

    Cathie Anderson and Suella Steel anchored the 75s team and were half of the silver medal winning Queens Cup team in Umag in September.

    Thanks to the Sandiegotennis instagram account for the photos. The 75s are on the left below.

    Congratulations to all participants.

    Results can be found here.


  • Klosters: Into Singles Final; Half Way to Doubles Final

    I played Rosemary Everett of Australia today not before 12:30 and we got on at 1:30 which wasn’t too bad. It was fun to play and I played pretty well..I like this 1200 meters of altitude so far. I play Helen Litt of NZL who beat the #2 seed first round, then the #3 seed today, and an Aussie team member yesterday so she’s having a good tournament so far.

    The doubles has been hard for the tournament to schedule. I think they just don’t have as many courts as they would like despite using courts in Klosters Dorf, the Sport Hotel and the six at the Sports Center. And matches have untimed warm ups and there have been a lot of three setters. Today the tournament organization tried to finish early so players could go to the dinner at the top of the mountain. So anyway, Kerry and I were to play Reinhilde Adams and Nora Blom tonight after Nora and Reinhilde finished their quarterfinal doubles. They couldn’t play last night because one of the players didn’t know she had a match. Tonight Reinhilde had a birthday dinner to attend so had to stop at 4:55pm. The only open court was at the Hotel Sport (someone kindly drove us) wait 10 minutes for a match to finish, wait as the court was prepared….brushed, lined, watered; it was after 4pm before we even started warming up. We warmed up Kerry, who hadn’t hit today. We started playing about 4:25. We won the first set 61 and were up 2/1 when Reinhilde had to go. We finish the match tomorrow. Kerry was hitting while we were discussing the situation and didn’t realize we were only starting the match today; she thought we would get a retirement at 4:55pm (the match had been scheduled after all and it wasn’t our fault that one of our opponents had a party to attend). On the other hand, it was another beautiful part of Klosters where we played today. The views can be rather distracting…and relaxing.

    So tomorrow I play Litt at 9:30, finish doubles not before 3pm (Kerry has singles not before 1;30 against Nora) and if we win we play the doubles final not before 6pm. I leave early Friday for the ITF World Seniors Team Championships in Ulm.

    Meanwhile, my team is traveling to Ulm, or trying to. Susan Wright is almost there, but Pat Purcell’s flight was cancelled…she’ll be there tomorrow. Travel can be hard!

    Draws are here.

    Photos are here.


  • The German Open, Last Practice

    After a day off , Jenny Cerff and I hit the practice court today for a final tune-up before the tournament. We had a solid practice. It was another warm sunny day, marred only by the racket of a grass mower cutting several feet of growth off the levee behind the courts. I thought they were grinding wood, it was so loud! Then music began over the PA system. It was a good challenge to our concentration.

    I found out a bit about my opponent today. She’s a marathon runner, very fast and left handed, it’s a bit of a tricky opener. Jenny plays a woman who is on the German Cup team this year, also a challenge.

    After tennis, as usual we bought ice from the Edeka, then hit Tennis Point (so I could get my racquet strung), and Penny Market.

    The recycling of bottles here is interesting. There’s a deposit of 15-25 Euro cents on most cans and bottles. At most stores there’s a machine where customers can insert bottles they purchased at that chain and get a refund to use at the store. It’s fast and easy.

    We returned to the club and they have put flags up from many countries including South Africa, which Jenny appreciated. There’s no USA 🇺🇸 flag though, so I stood in front of the German Open sign instead.

    Top 65s players Nora Blom and Heidi Eisterlehner were in action on the 2 center courts today. Nora is shown below (iPhone photo).

    German Senior Open Draws

    German words of the day:

    Platz = Court

    Trinke = drink

    Eis = ice cream


  • Germany: Practicing on the Red Clay

    Jenny Cerff and I had a good practice this morning at the ETUF club. The weather has been quite nice, with highs in the low 80s and lows in the upper 50s-low 60s, and a slight breezes, perfect for tennis. Sabine, the TD took a few photos of us from the club balcony overlooking the courts.

    The draws are out and I play a good German player on Tuesday afternoon. The draw is below.

    After about a two hour workout, I had a massage and Jenny had lunch, then we hit the Edeka to get ice (no ice at the club at all that we could find), and got back to the hotel. We went out wandering on foot to and Aldi market and then to a DM (something like a small Walgreen’s with organic snacks and no Snickers bars) where I got Saptil, my favorite travel laundry soap…though I did just find out there are laundromats nearby, so finding and using one may be another day’s adventure. We passed a lot of bakeries, which had some really tasty looking treats, but managed to resist. We figured out what this parking sign meant…pay parking.

    Most of the stores we’ve been frequenting don’t take Visa, MasterCard or AmEx. They do accept some cards, but not those. So be prepared to use cash at Penny Market or Edeka.

    This pretty church is next to our hotel, wedged between two modern buildings.

    We are practicing very early tomorrow before going to Dusseldorf for the day to watch a German league match. More on that tomorrow (or more likely on Sunday).


  • Finals Set for Women’s 50/60/70 Singles & Doubles

    It was another gorgeous La Jolla day full of lots of great tennis from 8am to after 8pm. The finals are now set for most of the women’s divisions.

    In the 50s, Andrea Rice ended unseeded Michelle Saunders’ run and Ros Nideffer beat Shelly Works to book a date with Rice in the final tomorrow. In doubles, #2 seeds Debbie Higa/Jami Jones overcame a slow start to beat #3 seeded Ellie Hammargren/Jennifer Lyons 60 in the third. Debbie Spence Nasim/Ros Nideffer’s slow start consisted of dropping 2 games in the first set vs zero in the second against Paulson/Rice. It will be a rematch of the 40 Hard Court final from last December in the final. As I left, Newman/Prejeen were playing Works Zimmermann in a 5-8 playoff match at a little after 8:30. Works/Zimmermann finally won it 63 in the third. They face Lane/Karwasky who beat Oconnor/Traylor in three sets, finishing around 8:30.

    Susan Wright continued her stellar play in the 60s, beating #3 seeded Leslie Airola Murveit without dropping a game, while Shannon Gordon Carney showed no ill effects from her 7 hours on court yesterday, beaing #2 seeded Tracey Thompson 75 61 to reach her first national singles final. Thompson/Wright advanced to the doubles final, edging Una Davis/Colleen Clery Ferrell 75 64. Robin Harris and I beat Tina Karwasky/Carolyn Lane 63 62. Robin played terrific tennis (to the surprise of no one). The marathon match of the day in this division was in the quarterfinal playoff between Andrea Barnes and Sherri Bronson, finally won 76 in the third by Bronson.

    In the 70s Brenda Carter won the battle of the Brendas, beating Brenda Winstead to advance to the final. Molly Hahn finally ended Betty Wachob’s marathon run, beating her 75 75. This final will be a repeat of the clay final from three weeks ago in Naples, Florida. The doubles final will be a repeat of the semis at that event. Leona Bryson/Kathy Bennett beat Elizabeth Barnhill/Barbara Hubbard and Carter/Wachob showed no mercy on Carol Gay/Sheila Johnson.

    The 80s moved into the semis without upsets, other than that #4 Carol Wood defaulted her quarterfinal singles match due to injury and Dorothy Matthiessen retired up a set and down 43 to Burnette Herrick.

    Next report will probably be on Saturday morning. We play at 2:30. If on Court 1 you can stream it online.


  • Keller, Saunders Cause Upsets in 50 Singles

    On the second day of play at the National Hard Courts at the La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club (lbjtc.com), there were some close escapes by seeded players but only two upsets, both in the 50 singles. Michele Saunders took out Anna Zimmermann, a 5-8 seed, 61 64 to advance to the quarters. Jenny Rens Keller, a La Jolla dentist and Beach Club member, played before a packed crowd on Court 8 against Ellie Hammargren. Keller, better known for her doubles prowess, proved equally adept at singles, taking out the #5 seed 46 62 64 in a grinding battle that lasted well over three hours. Hammargren had bloodied knees by the end….and a doubles match to play (which she and her partner Jennifer Lyons won handily).

    All seeds in the 60s advanced in straight sets, though Sherri Bronson had to work hard in the second set against Cindy Abel…she won 61 76.

    Betty Wachob, third seeded in the 70s, narrowly avoided an upset, edging Carolann Castell 61 57 76 to advance to the semis.

    Most impressive was the stamina of the top 90s players, Jane Lutz and Rita Price. Lutz is new to the age division and Price is the defending champion, and they are doubles partners. They battled each other for three sets before Lutz prevailed 61 26 75 in what may have been the defacto final of the round robin draw. They then teamed up to win their doubles match. All this tennis didn’t seem to slow down Price a bit as she was walking a talking a mile a minute after her matches!

    There was only one doubles upset: Andi Polisky/Leslie Zauher upset Cathie Anderson/Mary Alice Pisani, the 4th seeds, 62 62.

    Tomorrow is quarterfinal day in all divisions and there should be a ton of good singles and doubles matches.

    My doubles partner, Robin Harris and I won 61 60 today and play a 5-8 seed, Burgess/Drosner, tomorrow at 3pm. Most players seem to have gone to the barbecue on the beach this evening…burgers (meat and veggie), hot dogs, salads and deserts were on the menu…it was all very good and the setting was perfect.

    Robin Harris & Carolyn Nichols

    Tuesday Night Barbecue on the Beach

     

     


  • National Women’s Hard Court Nationals, La Jolla: Day 1

    The USTA National Women’s 50-90 Hard Courts are underway at the La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club. For the first time, this tournament’s matches played on Court 1 will be streamed LIVE by going to https://www.ipcamlive.com/ljbtc. You won’t be able to smell the sea air but you will be able to see some great senior women’s (and later in the week, men’s) tennis.

    There were 30 teams in the women’s 50 doubles, and that division featured the match of the day: Carolyn Lane, returning to national play after a long hiatus/Tina Karwasky (who has never had a hiatus since hitting her first ball!) against Karen Ann Broe/Rainy Miller, two strong local players. Lane, from Arizona, adapted quickly to the much heavier sea air, and imposed herself on the match at critical times in each set, never allowing Broe/Miller to stretch a lead. Karwasky drilled returns to set up Lane; Miller was a wall especially on her returns and Broe served and volleyed beautifully. In the end Lane/Karwasky’s greater experience ruled, and they won 75 46 64 in a highly entertaining match on Court 3.

    Una Davis/Prentiss Van Den Berg a 5-8 seed, were upset by San Diegans Shelley Goodson/Karyn McCartney in 50 doubles. Una was happy to have made it to the courts at all because she thought her first match wasn’t till Tuesday.

    All draws and results can be found here.

    Below are some photos of a first round 50s match featuring club member Lucia Romanov Stark. You can see the court one camera (white) above the LJBTC logo.


  • Klitch, Rice, Barker, Hahn Claim National Singles Titles Saturday in Naples

    There were four singles finals on Saturday (Roz King claimed the 80s title on Friday). One match stood out though, which was the nearly two and a half hour battle between Susan Wright the #2 seed, and top seeded Diane Barker. It was a reprisal of the final of the world championships last year, and was another tight battle. Diane won the first set 64 but not before Susan rallied from 35 15-40. The second set went on serve (unusual in general in women’s tennis, let alone in the 60+ division) for the entire set with very few break points, though Susan did have a break point with Diane serving at 5-6, so also a set point. Diane played a brave point and eventually forced a tiebreak which she won 7-3, and with it another gold ball and national clay title.

    The 40s final was between Jenny Klitch and Lizl Kotz. Klitch had too much variety for Kotz, winning 61 61. The 50s final between Shelly Works and Andrea Rice was won 60 61 by Rice who played brilliantly. the 70s final was also one sided with Molly Hahn putting on a great display, slicing deep and attacking throughout to win 61 61 in her first national 70s final.

    There was no 40s doubles. The 50s doubles title was won by Klitch/Vesna McKenna 61 46 retired over Mary Dailey/Rice. (Rice had to catch a plane….matches started late on Saturday.)The 60s doubles was finished yesterday, won by Nichols/Wright. The 4th seeds, Kathy Bennett/Liane Bryson beat Hubbard/Watanabe to take the 70s 60 61. And the 80s finished yesterday, won by DeVries/King.

    There were also a lot of bronze ball matches. In 50 singles, Alicia Rowley edged McKenna 63 76. Rowley/Works won the doubles bronze too with a straight set win over Kruger/Waterlek. The 60s 3/4 playoff was won by Bunny Allare in three sets over Frances O’Sullivan. Jones/Neuthaler won the doubles bronze yesterday. Betty Wachob took bronze in 70 singles with a 63 60 win over Lesley Pixley and she took the 70 doubles bronze too with Carter over Carol Clay/Ellen Goodman in 3 sets. This match pretty much was the last of the tournament…it was nearly 3 hours long and ended around dinner time Saturday.

    The other interesting result was that between Toni Novack and Ellen Goodman who were playing for 5th in the 70s. Novack led 60 50 40-0, and made a wrong move, tried to stretch it out…and couldn’t so had to retire, leaving Goodman with the win. Never give up!

    Draws are here.

    Photos are here.


  • King Crowned 80s Champ; Nichols/Wright Win 60 Doubles in Naples

    Roz King is peaking at age 80. The San Diegan easily beat a former nemesis, and good friend, Dori DeVries to win the 80 national clay courts and then teamed up with DeVries to beat the #2 seeds, Dorothy Wasser/Inge Weber in the doubles final. DeVries said she had no answers today, that King is moving great and just playing really well. Weber took the bronze in 80 singles while Carol Wood/Burnett Herrick won the doubles bronze.

    In the 70s, Brenda Carter had to go to a tiebreak for the second straight day, this time in the first set, against Leslie Pixley. She won the match 76 64 to advance to the final, where she’ll meet the “new kid on the block”, Molly Hahn. Hahn ousted Betty Wachob in the semis. In doubles, Hubbard/Watanabe continued their fine play, beating Carol Clay/Ellen Goodman in straight sets to advance to the final. There they will face Californians Kathy Bennett/Liane Bryson, who took out top seeded Carter/Wachob in the other semi.

    Susan Wright and I played very well to beat Pat Purcell/Bunny Allare 75 60. We didn’t drop serve the entire match (probably a first for me on clay…well on any surface!). The first set was very tight, with several deuce games…we won the set when I poached on set point (not our first one) after Susan hit a nice set up shot. We won the big points in the second set, as Bunny and Pat had game points in at least three of the games we won. Abbi Neuthaler/Kim Jones won the bronze with a tough 3-set win over Sherri Bronson (who was playing her third match in 6 hours!) and Kathy Foulk.

    In the 50s, Shelly Works worked hard (and hit many many high moon balls) to oust top-seeded Alicia Rowley 63 57 63. The moon balls got under Alicia’s skin…I saw her break her racquet after losing one point, but the two had a nice handshake and hug at the net after the match. Andrea Rice beat Vesna McKenna 64 64 in a well played match to advance to the final against Shelly. In doubles, Rice/Mary Dailey will take on McKenna/Jenny Klitch.

    The 40s final will be Klitch vs Lizl Kotz.

    And finally, thanks to the tournament volunteers!

    Photos are here.

    Draws are here: http://m.tennislink.usta.com/tournamenthome?T=212073


  • Carter, O’Sullivan Win Marathon Matches in Naples

    Frances O’Sullivan upset #4 seeded Pat Purcell in a very very long match today at the National Clay Courts in Naples. This is not the first time the two have played a long three setter, as the two bring out the best in each other. After splitting sets, O’Sullivan forged a 4-1 lead before Purcell rallied and the set fittingly ended in a tiebreak, won by O’Sullivan 9-7 (I think that’s the correct score).

    Purcell though rallied to combine with Bunny Allare to play a beautiful doubles match against Sherri Bronson and Kathy Foulk. They are now in the final against Susan Wright and me. We bet Abbi Neuthaler/Kim Jones in our semi.

    Susan Wright plays O’Sullivan next and Diane Barker plays Allare. Barker and Allare will be rekindling a rivalry which began as juniors in Florida.

    Toni Novack had three match points today against Brenda Carter, one in the second set and two in the third, before Carter prevailed in a third set tiebreak. These courts are soft, even for clay and Toni has a wicket dropshot which repeatedly nestled into the court for a winner. Carter said she didn’t know how she won, she was just trying to hang in there! Lesley Pixley beat Carol Clay in the quarters, which on the face wasn’t an upset (though Clay hadn’t lost previously to Pixley). Clay said Pixley played a fabulous match. Betty Wachob and Molly Hahn complete the final four in the 70s.

    Toni Novack

    Brenda Carter

    There was a marathon doubles match as well, won by Carol Clay/Ellen Goodman 76 in the third (of course)…they rallied from 2-5 down in the third to beat unseeded Ann Loose and Andi Polisky.

    The seeding committee did a great job too in the 50s, as the top four seeds advanced to the semi i singles and doubles. Andrea Rice, Vesna McKenna, Shelly Works and Alicia Rowley are in the semis; Works plays Rowley and Rice faces McKenna. Dailey Rice, Kruger/Wauterlek, Rowley Works and Klitch McKenna are in the semis. None lost a set though Dailey/Rice had to go to a tiebreak to beat Dybendahl/Esswein.

    Lizl Kotz and Jenny Klitch are in the finals of the 40s. Kotz beat Renee Alexis and Klitch beat Tangerine Manning 62 61.

    Roz King and Dori DeVries are in the final of the 80s with straight set wins over Inge Weber and Burnett Herrick respectively. DeVries/King upset #1 seeded Carol Wood/Burnett Herrick in straight sets and play Wasser/Weber in the final.

    There was an NSWTA (National Senior Women’s Tennis Assn) social today and player dinner. Photos are in the album linked below.

    And an update on Carol Gay…she was looking much better at the player dinner.

    Carol Gay

    Photos are here.

    Draws are here: http://m.tennislink.usta.com/tournamenthome?T=212073

     


  • Hubbard/Watanabe Upset Top Seeds at National Clay

    On a breezy warm (but not oppressively hot) day in Naples, nearly all the seeds were in action, second round (round of 16 or quarters) matches were played and no one ended up at the hospital…all in all business as usual. (FYI, Carol Gay was recovered enough to visit the tournament site, though said she felt woozy still. She also said the ride to the hospital…strapped to a gurney and cramping…was something special, and not in a good way. But she will be ok in a few days she thinks.)

    Barbara Hubbard/Janet Watanabe (Jolene’s mom) upset Molly Hahn and Sue Kimball 76 (5) 63 today in the women’s 70s. It wasn’t Sue’s best day…she also dropped her singles match to Ellen Goodman 61 63 and in all fairness (though she didn’t complain about it), she was suffering from a calf strain. The better women on the day won. Mary Alice Pisani, who upset Carol Gay yesterday, continued her fine play into the quarters where she’ll face Betty Wachob. The other seeds advanced to the quarters including Toni Novack (below).

    In the 60s, Betsy Savitt edged #5 seeded Mary Morgan 64 76. Sally Smith played a great match to upset #6 seeded Sherri Bronson 60 63. The other seeds advanced.

    Dorothy Wasser showed she is more than a doubles specialist, taking the middle set off of #2 seeded Dori DeVries before fading in the third. King, Weber and Herrick, the last 3 world champions, all advanced as well to the semis.

    In the 50s, the three seeds in action, McKenna, Rice and Works, advanced without incident.

    In 50 doubles, McKenna/Klitch advanced to the semis while a round of 16 match has yet to be played.

    All four seeds advanced to the semis in the 60s doubles, though there were some tight first sets in a couple matches…Mosely/Smith stuck with #3 seeds Jones/Neuthaler for a set, before succumbing 76 62. Peltz-Petow/Savitt likewise were neck in neck with Purcell/Allare before falling 75 60. Susan and I beat Lesley  Pixley/Lee Roisman.

    In the 80s, top seeded Herrick/Wood edged Kathie Meyering/Jeanette Tubbs 46 75 62. They face either DeVries/King in the semis. Wasser/Weber, the #2 seeds, advanced to the semis.

    Photos are here.

    Draws are here: http://m.tennislink.usta.com/tournamenthome?T=212073


  • Finals Set for Sunday in 50/60/70 Singles; Wargo Wins 40 Singles; Joanne Russell Cup

    Saturday was another gorgeous day in Naples, warm and humid but neither windy nor overly hot (temperature about 80).

    I played singles at 12:15 against Frances O’Sullivan. I played well and Frances had a bit of a calf injury…maybe more than a bit and I won 60 60, though we had some good points and games. I play Janet Mosely in the final; she took out Elizabeth Froehling 61 62. When I left the 60s doubles was going on between Kathy Foulk/Betsy Savitt and Joanne Russell/Terry Solins. Foulk and Savitt won the first set 63, and were bageled in the second; I’ll have the final result tomorrow.

    Betsy SavittJoanne Russell-001Kathy FoulkTerri Solins-001

    Leslie Wargo won the 40s with another 61 61 win, this over Jody Pearce (who was playing 50 doubles). Leslie and Jody are shown below with Emilio Sanchez.

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    In the 50s, the two semis were of contrasting length, but the end result was that both the #1 and #2 seeds were eliminated by lower seeds. Heather Herman beat Sheila Chiricosta 61 61 while Daniella Esswein, the #2 seed was edged by Kris McDonald 75 76 (7); McDonald rallied from 1-6 down in the tiebreak to win it (not sure if the tiebreak was in the first or second set though). They were out there a good long time. McDonald/Savitt won their 55  doubles later to reach the final; there they face Margaret Lumia/Ligia Bottinelli. Herman and Leslie Baird beat Esswein/Pearce to win the 50 doubles.

    Bottinelli-001Lumia Bottinelli

    In the 70s, Sue Kimball upset #2 seeded Betty Wachob 63 64. Wachob edged Kimball in three sets at BallenIsles last month, but this time Sue found a way to hit a lot of forehands and get to net more. Kimball combined later with Lil Peltz-Petow to win the 65 doubles.  Kimball faces Brenda Carter, the top seed, in the final; Carter beat Ellen Goodman in the semis. Carter/Wachob play Goodman/Carol Clay in the 70 doubles final tomorrow.

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    Judy Smith/Michaelin Watts won the 75 doubles

    Burnett Herrick/Dorothy Wasser won the 80 doubles. In 80 singles, Carol Wood and Inge Weber face off for the championship tomorrow; both are undefeated in round robin play.

    After I finished playing I watched Emilio Sanchez (former top 10 player, brother of Aranxta Sanchez Vicario) drill  his son and another, good adult player, doing various “Spanish” drills. His son is about 11 and has a one-handed backhand, and he’s pretty good already. The drills were tough; each player drilled for a few minutes, then recovered while the other player drilled and it was very interesting to watch, lots of emphasis on feet for the adult, hand speed too for the boy.

     

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  • Russell Grandes Dames, A Category II USTA Tournament

    There is a new Category II tournament in Naples, for women age 40-80, even divisions for singles and odd and even for 50-80, plus 40 doubles. I am playing 60 singles and 40 doubles (with Leslie Wargo from Ohio).

    The team is named for Naples resident Joanne Russell, the former tour player and TV commentator. She’s also playing, 60 doubles, though she normally plays pickleball, not tennis these days.

    The site is the Naples Bath and Tennis Club, home of the Sanchez/Casal tennis academy, There are a few hard courts and about 30 clay courts here, it’s a massive facility and a nice one.

    Play began today in all divisions. The 80s has a 5 person round robin, and Carol Wood was upset that she’d have to play two singles matches in one day (the sanction for the tournament was for Wed Feb 15-Sunday Feb 19, but the tournament director shortened it to the 16-19 long after entries opened and plane tickets were purchased. To be fair, the draws are mostly pretty small, which is probably why he shortened it. In the end, Carol upset Burnett Herrick, the 2015 World Champion in the 80s, in three sets, after dropping the first set. (Burnett also had to play an earlier match). Inge Weber, the 2016 world champion in the 80s, also advanced.

    The rest of the results went pretty much as expected. Many of the seeds don’t play till tomorrow.

    Naples is on the West Coast of Florida, on the Gulf of Mexico. I went to the Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park later in the afternoon, after a light practice. It’s a nice park, a mile or so long with a path adjacent to the beach, lots of picnic tables, and a quiet beach (with lots of shells). It was very windy today, and the sunset wasn’t a spectacular one, but it was nice to see a sunset over the water.

    Tomorrow I  have singles & doubles.

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    Link to draws: http://m.tennislink.usta.com/TournamentHome/Tournament.aspx?T=190084


  • WINDY Quarterfinal, Semifinal Day at BallenIsles

    Yesterday, Friday, was a washout, though it wasn’t super windy or particularly cold. Today was a sunny, cool and very windy day with gusts up to 40 mph (maybe more, I’m guessing a bit). Tables and chairs blew over but no players. At times the gusts were so strong my racquet was moving around on its own while I was waiting to return serve. Fortunately, the courts at BallenIsles are hydro courts (with underground watering); if not, the clay would also have blown off the courts and the courts would have dried out and continuous all-day play wouldn’t have been possible.

    I played two singles matches. First I played Pat Hirsch from Ohio, and indoor player. She also tops out at just over five feet tall and probably 105 pounds but she kept her feet on the ground while we played. I won 60 60, and the wind probably helped me some as I was much more used to it. Then I played Becky Timmis from Georgia who was the #3 seed. She won a good match in the quarter against Meg Barclay, rebounding from a 52 second set deficit, and holding off three set points to win 64 75. I play Kathy Foulk, who had a tough match with the improving Birgitte Hostrop from Denmark, winning 63 64. She then beat Debbie Antoine 61 61 to reach the final (and won a doubles match later with Frances O’Sullivan to reach the doubles final).

    In the 40s, Kim Jones beat #2 seed Daniela Esswein 62 62 but the match took nearly 2 hours. She plays Paula Myslivecek in the final tomorrow. Myslivecek and Christina Sirianni edged Ligia Bottinelli/Stacey Williams 10-8 in the match tiebreak to reach the doubles final against Cheryl Keller/Susan Kirby in the 40s.

     

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    In the 50s, Erin Boynton reached the final the hard way, dropping the first set of both her matches before rebounding to win in three. First she upset #2 seed Julie Farina 16 62 62. Then, playing Rene Tharpe (who ousted #4 seeded Terri Gaskill) she went down 60 41…had Tharpe right where she wanted her apparently, because she reeled off five straight games. Tharpe got a bit too tentative and Erin did a great job of combining patience and aggressiveness in the wind to take the set which featured many lengthy games. Tharpe took a 3/1 lead in the third…and again Erin then took five games in a row, to reach the final against Shelly Works. Works beat Mariana Hollman, her doubles partner 64 64 in the same time it took Erin to beat Tharpe in three sets.

     

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    The top four seeds in the 50s reached the doubles semis with Keller/Kirby the only ones to drop a set (to Bottinelli/Williams, who again lost a match tiebreak).

    In the 70s, Brenda Carter/Betty Wachob are in the singles and doubles finals (against Lee Delfausse/Sue Kimball).

    In the 80s, Judy Smith scored a big upset, beating Burnett Herrick 64 76 (3) and plays Canada’s Inge Weber in the final. Weber beat Carol Wood. In doubles, Libby Keenan/Mimi Donegan beat Wood/Muffie Grieve and play Herrick/Smith in the final.

    Weather tomorrow is supposed to be very cold (low 40s at match time) but not so windy.


  • Crawford Cup Day 4, Sunny Saturday in the “Sunshine” State

    No rain today at Crawford Cup! I’m sure the staff, tournament director, referee and volunteers were as happy as the players about that weather outcome.

    There were a lot of finals played today and few upsets.

    In the 85s, two-time world champion Jane Lutz beat her doubles partner Rita Price. Rita was her usual ebullient self, happy that she won eight games in defeat. Jane and Rita then won their doubles match in three sets after which I saw them eating their pulled pork sandwich with fries (no vegans allowed).  Rita is already looking forward to the 90s next year. This group of 85s is pretty spunky.

    Donna Fales (check her birth certificate) won the 75s over Burnett Herrick. Inge Weber edged Grace Woo in three sets to place third. Burnett though didn’t go home without a title, teaming with Dorothy Wasser to win a tight two-setter over Kathy Langer and Lyn Tietz. For Langer, who was playing her first tournament after back surgery, the tournament was a success anyway. Lola O’Sullivan/Libby Keenan took third.

    Anne Guerrant upset top-seeded Kerry Young in the 65s in straight sets, hitting too firmly for Kerry to successfully execute her deadly dropshot often enough. Carol Gay defaulted too Brenda Carter (illness), so Carter faces Guerrant in the final tomorrow. However Young ended the day on a winning note, teaming with Sue Bramlette to thoroughly beat Carter/Cindy Babb. Sue was on top of the ball, hitting numerous angles which opened up the middle and Kerry was on top of the net to finish the point there. The 3/4 playoff was won 76 (8) 76 (8) by Toni Novack/Pam Simons over Carol Clay/Ellen Goodman; Clay/Goodman had numerous set points in the second set but didn’t seem to perturbed by the loss, having enjoyed the match.

    In the 55s, I beat Kris McDonald in a tough 63 61 match while Diane Barker allowed Kathy Vick only a single game in advancing to the final. McDonald though won the doubles title with Betsy Savitt 63 64 over Cindy Leprevost/Yvonne Gallop, the third seeds. In the 3/4 playoff, the top two seeds squared off, with the top seeds, Mary Ginnard/Vick finishing strongly, beating Erin Boynton/Abbi Neuthaler, the second seeds, 46 62 62.

    Susan Boyer won the 45 singles by default over Daniela Esswein. The 45s doubles is set too, between Neuthaler/Sally Zasloff and Melanie Carter/

    Draws and results; http://tennislink.usta.com/tournaments/TournamentHome/Tournament.aspx?T=155292#&&s=7Draws8

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